Thame Remembers Lieutenant Edward Greville Canning Holbrook
Edward Greville Canning Holbrook was born in Dover in 1907, the only son of Charles Edward Holbrook and Kathleen Hay (nee Canning). His father was a master mariner and Trinity House pilot and his mother a music teacher.
Edward went to Lord Williams’s Grammar School, Thame in 1922, leaving in 1925. He then travelled to Canada with his mother, his father having died in 1921.
He returned to England in 1930, and by 1938 he was an actor manager at Sadlers Wells in London. Edward married Leonora Paton in 1939 in London and they went to live in Cambridge.
He was gazetted as a Temporary Lieutenant (Special Branch), RNVR, in August 1941, and became a specialist in mine clearing activities, for which he was (posthumously) Mentioned in Dispatches “for courage and skill in dangerous minesweeping operations during Operation Antidote” in the western Mediterranean in May 1943.
He was based at the shore establishment HMS Cormorant, Gibraltar, when on 2nd November 1943, he was killed with two others in an explosion off Naples, probably as a result of mine clearance, no bodies were recovered.
Lieutenant Edward Greville Canning Holbrook was lost at sea and is commemorated on Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Southsea, Hampshire. He is remembered in Thame on Lord Williams’s school honours board.
The Thame Remembers Cross was delivered to Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Southsea, Hampshire on 14th June 2017 by Cllr Tom Wyse (Mayor of Thame)